Here’s a guy we had totally forgotten about — Sean Richardson.
Richardson suffered the second neck injury of his career last October while playing for the Green Bay Packers. Many assumed his career was over. Well, Richardson says not so fast.
After having a second cervical fusion surgery in January and going through the rehab process, Richardson says he has been fully cleared and wants to play football again.
“It wasn’t a tough decision. I love the game of football. My agent and [renowned neck and spine specialist] Dr. [Robert] Watkins have made sure I’ve gone through the same protocols I did with my first injury,” Richardson said. “I had multiple opinions from the top doctors just like after my first surgery. I’ve talked to my family and my agent and Dr. Watkins about the pros and cons.
“The worst that would happen is another herniated disk. We had five steps we had to check off to be able to start back playing, and I met all the criteria. I will be able to play at a high level again.”
Unfortunately for Richardson, if he does come back — and he says there are interested teams — that comeback isn’t likely to take place with the Packers. They’re currently carrying five safeties on the active roster. That number was six before Chris Banjo was placed on IR and then released earlier this season.
If I had to bet on a landing spot, I’d wager on the Oakland Raiders. Former Packers’ personnel guru Reggie McKenzie is the team’s general manager and they actually signed Richardson to an offer sheet when he was a restricted free agent in 2015.
The Packers ended up matching that offer to keep Richardson in town.
Defenses seem to also be evolving toward the kind of player Richardson is. More teams are using the hybrid safety/linebacker, something a thumper like Richardson is tailor-made for.
If the guy truly is out of harm’s way for further injury, he shouldn’t have much trouble finding a home.